A sheriff deputy who was patrolling the area of Schmidt and Gene Roads in Sage at 1 p.m. on Tuesday Sept. 25, smelled a powerful odor of marijuana emanating from the 24000 block of Schmidt Road, officials reported.
The deputy discovered a 3-acre plot of land shielded by a large blue fence.
A sheriff’s helicopter was called in and confirmed the officer’s suspicions that a marijuana farm was in full operation, officials said.
Investigators found 184 huge and mature pot plants and over 150 pounds of dried plants in addition to 5 pounds of marijuana that were ready for sale, Sgt. John Morin said in a sheriff’s press release.
There were also scales and items used to package the cannabis, according to a sheriff’s report.
The estimated street value of the drugs is valued at over $1 million, law enforcement officials stated.
Gang Task Force Members arrived on scene and helped deputies apprehend five suspects:
- Juan Rodas – 19 years
- Bernade Ayala – 23 years
- Bladimir Gonzalea – 22 years
- Juan Seduardo-Hernadez – 23 years
- Juan Miranda – 22 years
Border Patrol agents arrived and placed immigration holds on all five suspects.
Anyone with additional information regarding this incident is urged to contact Deputy Graham at 951-791-3400.
Stephanie D. Schulte is a writer/photographer with SWRNN. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.